Holy Spirit Activism

Home » Posts tagged 'Worship'

Tag Archives: Worship

The author

Micael Grenholm - a Swedish charismactivist residing with the Jesus Army in the UK.

Micael Grenholm - a Swedish charismactivist residing with the Jesus Army in the UK.

Join the Jesus revolution! Write your email adress to follow this blog and get updates about new posts via email.

Join 2,326 other followers

Worhip on the Streets

Originally published on the Jesus Youth website.

thumb_img_1714_1024

During the last six months, a group of young people from around the UK have been gathering together to worship God on the streets and tell people about Jesus.

It all started after the Jesus Army’s main youth event, RAW, in August, 2016. Jack Brown from Northampton thought that it was amazing to see young people set ablaze for God, but that it shouldn’t just have to happen once a year. He approached some people from Coventry and talked about reaching out to others and equipping the church.

thumb_img_3174_1024

The format has been that young people from different locations and regions gather together, head out to the street and evangelise for a couple of hours. After that, the youth go to a local Jesus Army community house for some food and fellowship. (more…)

Advertisements

Worship as a Revolutionary Act of Resistance

thumb_img_3294_1024

Article written for Pentecostals & Charismatics for Peace & Justice. Visit our updated website!

The charismatic revival has not just been about signs and wonders, but about worship and music as well. Similar to previous revivals like Methodism and Salvationism, early Pentecostalism had a lot of zeal and passion in their hymns, with a renewed focus on the Holy Spirit and miracles. The African American influences and inspiration from the mission field also impacted the tone of the music so that it became more inspirational.

Things changed even more during the Western charismatic renewal of the 1960’s and 1970’s, as the Jesus movement incorporated popular, hippie tunes into their worship. This in turn impacted the Vineyard which combined the contemporary style with a focus on singing to God rather than just about him. Today, charismatic churches like Hillsong in Australia and Bethel in California are without doubt the main influences when it comes to contemporary worship music and are really popular especially among the youth.

This style of worship is not without criticism. Songs are commercialized, the concert-like performances are expensive and the worship leaders may receive too much focus. Popular worship lyrics that emphasize God’s majesty and power are criticized for portraying him as too distant and dominant, while songs about human struggles and doubts are rare. (more…)

Why Churches Should Abandon Stage Lights and Fog Machines

stage

Are there any reasons to believe that colourful stage lights and fog machines are anything else than the toys of Christian stage technicians and a compensation for lack of Biblical revival? No. The global trend of churches investing billions of dollars in superfluous show equipment has increased dramatically over just the last few decades, but not many have asked themselves why we do it and what happens to church when we do it.

Of course, if someone dares to question this unbiblical practice that person is easily dismissed as someone who doesn’t understand young people or who isn’t into culturally relevant evangelism. So hi, I’m a young evangelist, and I hate stage lights. And fog machines, those horrible, stupid fog machines! How painfully obvious isn’t it that modern, Western churches lack God when they literally try to fabricate something which the Scriptures describes as a manifestation of the Lord’s presence?

As I’ve explained in my God vs Wealth series, Jesus doesn’t want us to be rich but live as simply as possible so that we can give as much to the poor as possible. This applies not just to individual disciples but to churches as well. There are hundreds of millions of Christians around the world living in poverty. If we truly think that they are our brothers and sisters, we can’t ignore their suffering by spending loads of money on superfluities.

As John puts it: “If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?” (1 Jn 3:17) (more…)

Worship Song: King of Light

Written and performed by me. No copyright, spread it on, to God be the glory.

Sand and scorching heat
Bloodstain on the street
Tortured and betrayed
Vision starts to fade

All our guilt and sin
Carries He within

King of light
God of life
Crucified
Chokes and dies

Land and heavens shake
For the Kingdom’s sake
Demons flee away
Now that we are saved

All our guilt and sin
Carried He within

King of light
Love divine
Breaks the night
As evil dies

King of light
God of life
Crucified
As evil dies

Worship Song: President of Love

Written by yours truly, performed with Sarah Stenmark and Johannes Widlund.

Verse 1
Every soldier’s uniform
and every garment rolled in blood
will be fuel for fire.

Every tank will be an ambulance
Every gun will be a spoon
Nations won’t fight no more

Chorus
‘Cause Your Kingdom has come to this broken earth
It all started when You came through the virgin birth
Now this church You see is Your embassy
We pledge allegiance to the Prince of Peace (more…)

Song: Strengthen My Inner Being

Tomorrow starts a conference I’m co-arranging on Christian community life, with a focus on sharing economic sharing. During worship we will actually sing some songs I’ve written, including this piece based on Ephesians 3:16-21:

Strengthen my inner being with Your Spirit’s power
dwell in my heart and give me faith

Help me grasp how wide and long and high and deep Your love is to me God, root me in love

Fill me completely with all of Your fullness

All the glory be to the One who can
do abundantly more than I even can imagine
through the power that is now in work within me
Glory to Your Name forever

Idolatry isn’t About Distracting Hobbies – It’s Far Worse

buddha-405611_960_720

Idols – worship highly discouraged

“Dear children, keep yourselves from idols.” – 1 Jn 5:21

Reading the prophetic books of the Old Testament for the first time, I was almost a bit annoyed by the constant warnings against idolatry. Isaiah, Ezekiel, Hosea and others constantly bring up how bad idolatry is and how silly idol-worshippers are, bowing down for statues they themselves have made.

I was like, yeah yeah, I get it. Idols are bad, move on please. I thought that not worshipping other gods than God was lesson one of Christianity, the most fundamental ethic of them all, and so constantly repeating it throughout Scripture felt unnecessary. In my view it was as if the driving instructor would constantly remind you to sit behind the wheel when driving an electric car.

Others must have felt the same way, because when the topic of idolatry came up in my church, people started to forcingly convince themselves that they were idolaters somehow. We’ve all stolen, been jealous or murdered sometime, at least if you define the latter as being angry which Jesus seems to do in Mt 5, and so to make sure that idolatry wasn’t something we could just say that we happily avoid, our youth pastor told us that an idol is “everything that you put higher than God”. It could be money, sex, power or Pokèmon. And you didn’t have to worship it, just immerse yourself into it. (more…)

Advent, Miracles and Donkeys

jesus donkey

Happy advent! Let us as always read a Bible text that has nothing to do with Christmas, but rather is a prologue to easter:

As Jesus approached Bethphage and Bethany at the hill called the Mount of Olives, he sent two of his disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and as you enter it, you will find a colt tied there, which no one has ever ridden. Untie it and bring it here. If anyone asks you, ‘Why are you untying it?’ say, ‘The Lord needs it.’ ”

Those who were sent ahead went and found it just as he had told them. As they were untying the colt, its owners asked them, “Why are you untying the colt?”

They replied, “The Lord needs it.” (Lk 19:29-34)

Jesus is not renting a donkey, nor does He ask permission to borrow it beforehand – He simply uses the miraculous gift of prophecy to foresee which donkey owner will allow him to borrow a donkey if they hear that He needs it. It makes me think of 1 Sam 9 where Samuel knows exactly where the donkeys of Saul’s father are. God keeps track of your ass! These prophetic words of knowledge are common today in the charismatic movement, where God gives you information about persons, places or donkeys. My friend Simon Adahl has experienced this countless times, so had John Wimber. Listen to this powerful testimony about words of knowledge on an airplane:

(more…)

Song: I Love Jesus

Back in August, I wrote a song simply called I Love Jesus. Here’s a recording where I sing it with some friends:

Jesus Army Worship

Jesus Army Worship

I Love Jesus, I love Him so
He’s the only one who knows my heart and saves my sinful soul
Of course I love my family, my friends and even foes
But Jesus is my number one forevermore

I love Jesus, I love the Son of God
‘Cause He hangs around with idiots, the losers and the odd
He criticizes people who are self-righteous and proud
And when He sees injustice He gets angry and loud!

I love Jesus, I love what He said
He’s like I’m the way, the truth, the life, the gate, the light, the bread
He debated with the Pharisees and turned them on their heads
And to His disciples He said go and raise the dead! (more…)

Poem: I Love Jesus

image

These are the lyrics to a song I wrote just a couple of weeks ago. I haven’t recorded it yet so it’s hard for me to give you the melody, but for now you can at least read the lyrics as a poem: 

I Love Jesus, I love Him so
He’s the only one who knows my heart and saves my sinful soul
Of course I love my family, my friends and even foes
But Jesus is my number one forevermore

I love Jesus, I love the Son of God
‘Cause He hangs around with idiots, the losers and the odd
He criticizes people who are self-righteous and proud
And when He sees injustice He gets angry and loud!

I love Jesus, I love what He said
He’s like I’m the way, the truth, the life, the gate, the light, the bread
He debated with the Pharisees and turned them on their heads
And to His disciples He said go and raise the dead!
(more…)

Living Liberation Through Worship

image

This is a contribution for reflection for the Wild Goose Festival

A lot of Christian activists detach themselves from the Bible, evangelicalism and a devoted life to God. I know of so many Christians that used to be passionate about Jesus, then after they started working for peace and justice, they started to question their faith and it grew colder. I even know of some becoming atheists. I fear that Christian activism is one of the main secularizing movements in the church today.

Of course, it is with pain I’m writing this. As you can tell from my blog title, I’m a Christian activist myself. For over five years I’ve been telling fellow Christians to love their enemies, share all they have with the poor, end oppression and care for the creation. I am very critical to the lack of activism within evangelicalism, but I’m convinced that it isn’t because they read the Bible too much or take Jesus too seriously – on the contrary, they ignore large parts of God’s Word even though they claim to believe in it. Much like the pharisees in the time of the gospels.

If we do take Jesus and the Bible seriously, we’ll sell everything we have and give the money to the poor (Mk 10:21). We’ll never fight back but turn the other cheek(Mt 5:40-48). We’ll give to everyone that asks us (Lk 6:30). And not only that, we’ll heal the sick and raise the dead (Mt 10:8), prophesy and speak in tongues (Acts 2:6-21) and preach the Gospel to the whole world (Mt 28:18-20). If you follow Jesus, you can’t separate peace and justice from miracles, evangelism, Bible study or prayer. It’s all connected.
(more…)